Essex Police uses highest number of domestic violence protection orders outside of trial forces

Domestiv violence. Library image.

Domestiv violence. Library image. - Credit: PA

Essex Police has been granted 178 doemstic violence protection orders since they were introduced – while Suffolk Constabulary have had eight.

Courts have granted the highest number of domestic violence protection orders (DVPOs) to Essex Police since they were introduced last March.

A Freedom of Information request revealed Essex Police had been granted 178, the highest of any force not involved in trialling the scheme.

The force has had all but six of its applications approved.

Nationally 2,220 DVPOs have been issued, which prevent offenders from contacting their victims.

They were launched after a one-year pilot in West Mercia, Wiltshire and Greater Manchester.

The City of London Police has had none, while Gloucestershire has had just two.

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Suffolk Constabulary has made eight applications since the launch of DVPOs, and had all of them approved by the courts.

The FoI request, made by the Press Association, also uncovered the number of disclosures made under Clare’s Law.

This allows police to divulge information about a partner’s previous history of domestic abuse or violence either after a request, or by approaching new partners.

Essex Police has made 98 applications and made 45 disclosures, while Suffolk Constabulary has made 61 applications and 17 disclosures.

Lindsay Whitehouse, deputy police and crime commissioner for Essex, said: “Domestic abuse is the only crime type that is an area of focus in the Police and Crime Plan for Essex, and I am delighted that Essex Police continues to implement innovative measures to protect victims and prevent harm from occurring.

“The fact that almost every single Domestic Violence Protection Order sought by Essex Police has been approved by courts suggests that the force is using this legislation appropriately and ethically.

“Domestic abuse is unacceptable. We must continue to provide support and protection to victims, and ensure that perpetrators know they are not free to commit abuse.”